You've been working for weeks, maybe months, or even years to educate yourself and learn all there is to know about starting your own business. You've defined your business model, including how you're going to generate an income for your business.
Maybe you're going to begin selling your unique products to a specific audience. Maybe you're a coach and you've gained experience coaching and are ready to promote your services. Or, maybe you're a photographer who is done with the 'free shoots' and ready to launch your services to the world!
No matter what your business model may look like, your website should be your #1 marketing tool. It's open, to everyone, 24 hours a day. Why not use it to its fullest potential!?
Launching a website can feel very stressful to someone who may not have the technical experience or time to design.
To make it easier on you, whether you hire someone to design your site or you make the attempt on your own, here are THREE things you MUST have before launching your website.
#1 | Branding
Contrary to popular belief, a brand is not just a logo. (But, it should contain a logo!) It's not just a beautiful color palette that you found on Pinterest. It's the feeling you get when everything is put together, along with the voice behind it.
Here's a strong brand example that you may be able to relate to: When you think of Disney, what immediately comes to mind? Mickey Mouse, Cinderella's Castle, magic, wishes, dreams, happiness, sparkles, fireworks, and even sentimental feelings of your childhood.
That's a brand. Do they have a logo? Of course they do! Do they have a color palette? They do, and even individual ones for their different brands within their brand. But, most of all, they make you feel those magical, imaginative feelings.
You need a strong brand for your business. You need to feel confident talking about your business, what problems your business can solve for your customers, and how your business should feel to those customers that may even refer you to someone else in the future!
#2 | Copywriting
You're reading this post on this website right now because I put words here. Simple enough, right? But, in my experience designing websites, it is REALLY hard to write about yourself and the value you can provide to others. This is the number one item that my clients struggle with. They can easily talk about the value of their colleagues, other businesses, and other products, but when it comes to talking about them, they freeze.
I highly recommend that if you write the copy yourself, send it to a few friends and colleagues to review. See what their take is on it. Are you explaining your value enough? Would they purchase your services or products? Are they confused by your processes? Red line your copy until you have it mapped out exactly the way you want it!
#3 | Images/Photography
This final must-have is actually pretty simple for most in creative businesses. Most photographers or designers already have examples of work, and what better way to show it off than throughout their website? But, if you don't have images that you feel will work for your website, stock photography is one way to go. Make sure any images you take from the Internet are commercial-free, or you could get slapped with a hefty fine or a lawsuit!
Remember to think about your audience first and foremost. If they don't have a clear navigation around your website, they will leave. If you don't call out what you want them to do on your website, they will leave. Make it easy, make it unique, and make it stand out from any potential competition out there!
So, what are you waiting for? Gather up some items from the categories above and you will be well on your way to an incredible website for your business.
Keep reading + check out other posts!